Today, I have the honor of writing the first post of the new year. We all know that the first of January is the signal that we need to take a new look at our resolution list. If you’re anything like me, you quit last year’s list earlier than you meant to do. You know—like January 2nd.

See, it seems like we always make resolutions that we can’t actually keep, things like losing weight, or fixing the gutters, or doing better on our marriage. While those are all great, they seem to get lost… in other things.

Well let me start of the next year talking about one of my favorite people from history. Most of us know the Christmas story and the basic characters. There’s Jesus (of course), Mary, Herod, an angel or two, some wise men, and some sheep. Oh, I left out a guy: Joseph. You know, it’s amazing how often this father is forgotten.

In his post last week, Dan contemplated what it was like for Jesus to have “emptied himself.” What do you think that was like? If he was truly human, he probably screamed when hungry, didn’t sleep well at night, demanded from his parents, and probably raised a little hell just to prove his independence. Well, that’s what my one year old is doing now. I’m going to be honest, it’s not an easy ride. Then again, I wouldn’t change it for the world.

See, Joseph gave up everything for his son. In order to protect his new wife and unborn child, he sent his wife to go visit her cousin. I realize customs were different back then, but I couldn’t imagine spending the first few month of marriage without my wife. Still, that is a sacrifice Joseph was willing to make. Weeks before the baby was born, Joseph took his family to his ancestral hometown. One the baby was born, they were forced to flee for their lives.

I wonder at times if I am the kind of father that would pack up everything for my son. It’s easy to say that I’d be willing to sacrifice for him, but it’s a lot harder to actually do it. My son didn’t sleep through the night until he was ten months old. That was definitely a rough time. Now he’s a year old, walking, and pretty much rearranging our house (with everything somehow ending up on the floor).

This year, as I write my new year’s resolutions, I’m not as concerned with getting everything right. If I take Joseph’s example as my guide, I realize that at the top of my list is this first resolution:

1) Love my son as Joseph loved his.

photo credit: danielmoyle via photopin cc

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